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Never Hear The Dreaded “No” Word Again

Tag: * Top Rated,Personal GrowthNeill Gibson

In a recent post I talked about how I try to hear everything as either “please” or “thank you,” and how this supports the quality of communication and connection I have with others, and thereby improves the quality of my relationships.

While that practice provides invaluable support for both my personal and professional relationships, there’s another practice I picked up along the way that fits with it hand-in-glove.No to no sign

Long ago I heard Kelly Bryson, author of Don’t Be Nice, Be Real, ask the question: “Where could you go if you weren’t afraid of ‘no’?”

He points out how many people are prevented from going after what they want in life by their fear of hearing that dreaded word, “NO!”

It’s a good point, and one that I’ve taken to heart. Here’s how the question occurs to me these days…

Where Could You Go If You Never Heard “No”?

What would it take to transform your fear of hearing the word “no” in your most important relationships–intimate, dating, family, work … ? Even better, how would it be if no one ever said “no” to you again?

Well, the easy way to never hear no is by never again asking anyone for anything. But that’s living kind of small isn’t it?

“Well, isn’t it inevitable,” you might ask, “that if you ask people for things that some of them are bound to say ‘no’?”

Here’s the trick–and it’s not really a trick at all.

Never hearing “no” starts by understanding that you never hear what other people say in the first place. Never!

You only hear what your brain tells you that you think they’ve said.

What’s the difference?

I know you believe you understood what you think I said, but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.

Somewhere I read that the words people use only convey 10% to 20% of the meaning that is intended. Another 20% to 30% is conveyed through intonation, pitch, pacing, etc. of the voice. And the remainder, the bulk of the meaning, is conveyed through facial expression and body language.

Then your own frame of mind gets added in, and your circumstances, and everything else that goes along with the way your brain is influenced in its interpretation.

And here’s where your interpretation gets even more dubious.

The more reactive you are to hearing certain things the more your transparent beliefs, unacknowledged commitments and habitual interpretations are likely to cause you to misinterpret the other person’s intended meaning.

It seems obvious that you never hear what somebody else says, you only hear what your brain has interpreted that they’ve said.

How to Hear “No” as “Yes”

The problem with the word “no” is that it conveys too little information. “No” is actually an expression that a person wants something different than what you’ve requested, but without any explanation of what they do want instead.

That’s why I don’t think there is a more emotionally charged word in the language than the word “no”. It conveys too little information–and we usually fill in the blanks with the worst possible stories.

I’ve come to understand that whenever a person says “no” to something I’ve requested, they’re actually saying “yes” to a different strategy than the one they inferred from my request.

“No” simply means that they prefer a different strategy they believe is more likely to get them what they value or what they need.

The “Yes” Guess Game

So people never say “no” to what you’ve requested. They’re always saying “yes” to something else that they prefer, but they’re not letting you in on what they’re saying “yes” to.

In my mind, negotiation is all about creating alignment in the areas of values and strategies–and in that order.

So, since I can’t hear “no” anymore, my natural inclination is to begin to discover the unexpressed values and strategies that the other person prefers to the ones implicit in my request.

What’s most important for me here is to make sure that wherever we end up in the negotiation, we find strategies that are entirely in harmony with both of our values and that don’t leave anything out that either of us need to be satisfied.

Turning “No” into Know

How to orchestrate such a negotiation is a little bit beyond the scope of one blog post. Simply put, you need to have a conversation that primarily has your attention focused on creating an alignment of your values. Once this alignment has been achieved then, and only then, try work out strategies that will be successful in respecting what everyone wants.

Even without all of the distinctions you may need to have such a conversation, hopefully you’ve gotten the gist of how it might possible that you would never hear “no” again.

Because really “no” is only a poorly expressed “yes.”

(Mmmmm, “Distinctions!” There is a juicy topic…)

Would You Take On This Practice – Yes or No?

Again, I’m interested in hearing your thoughts about the possibility of never hearing “no” again, and what happens the next time you try hearing “yes” instead.

Until next time …

Committed to Your Success,
Neill Gibson


How to Actually Achieve Your Dreams

Tag: * Top Rated,Personal GrowthBeth and Neill

Dreams Do Come True

If you’re like most of us, at one point or another in your life you’ve had a dream. Maybe about being someone important, someone of influence.

Who hasn’t had fantasies–big dreams? Maybe your dream was to be a prima ballerina, and Olympic gold medalist or a New York Times best-selling author.

And how many of us haven’t dreamed of being rich, or successful, or being in happy, healthy relationships?

Unfortunately…

All too often our big dreams stay just that Рdreams, and our great ambitions  fade into distant memories.

This my dear friends is sad but so often true. Rather than experiencing life as a thrilling adventures in self-realization, we get started believing the rumors that life is hard and just settle for what we can get.

But guess what? It’s never too late to achieve your [tag-tec]personal goals [/tag-tec] or [tag-tec]your childhood dreams[/tag-tec]. Life really can be that thrilling adventure, if only we stop blaming others and take responsibility for getting what we want.

One of the biggest problems when it comes to achieving our goals and dreams is the language we use, either silently to ourselves or out loud to the world at large.

As Henry Ford said: “If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.”

Too many of us get so wrapped up thinking we just can’t do something that we never even attempt it. It’s too hard. It’s just impossible. No one could do this.

But look around. If that were really true, there would be no discoveries, no advancements, and no new ideas.

It has been said that you can only have something if you believe it’s possible. One way to start believing something is possible is to experience some success–even little tiny successes–in the direction of what you believe is impossible.

Try it Out For Yourself

So if you have a dream and you’ve been holding yourself back with self-doubt and lack of confidence, try this exercise.

  • On a piece of paper write down something you want your life.
  • Under one heading, make a list of all the things you Can Do to get the thing you want.
  • Under another heading, list the actions you Might Be Willing To Do.
  • Under another heading, list the actions that seem “Impossible” For You To Do.

Now look at the list things you “Can Do” and commit to taking at least one of the actions each day. Then every day check them off when you’ve accomplish them.

As you gradually accomplish all of the actions you Can Do, start on the next list under the heading actions you “Might Be Willing To Do.”¬† Again, check each of them off when you’ve accomplish it.

When you’re done with both of those lists, move on to actions that seemed “Impossible For You To Do.”

You might be surprised, that as you move through this process, the actions you thought were impossible become more and more possible, and now the impossible strangely becomes possible after all.

So never stop dreaming my friend. Don’t get stuck in your own imagined limitations. Think big and don’t give up. Take every action you can that will move you towards those dreams. As you make small steps toward what you want–I promise–what you want will seem more and more attainable.

With love and deep appreciation for who you are,
Beth


Dealing with Difficult People? Learn to Handle them in a Constructive Way

How Do You Deal?

Do you end up [tag-tec]dealing with difficult people[/tag-tec] on a regular basis? If so, are there times when you want to just run in hide, or click your heels and make them disappear? Or are you the kind of person that gets angry and combative right back at them? Either way, these situations can be very stressful. But don’t worry…

The good news is that there are ways to deal with these people that are much less stressful and you’ll also end up feeling much more satisfied with the outcome.

Believe it or not, some people don’t let these kinds of situations bother them. They simply stay calm and stress-free when confronted with upset and anger. Wouldn’t it be nice to know what they know? Well now you can! Here are a few simple tips that will help you breathe a sigh of leave the next time you end up dealing with an angry person.

Often times when we realize someone is upset the first thing we do is take personal responsibility. We believe that the only reason they’d be disturb–and letting us about it–is that it must be about us. The first thing to understand is that when managing these kinds of situations is that it’s not about you, it’s really all about them!

I can guess what you’re probably thinking: “What you mean don’t take it personally, when there are someone screaming at me and telling me it’s my fault!”

I understand how difficult this will be at first, but when you begin to appreciate this one point, it becomes much easier to avoid taking these things personally: Every statement you hear someone say comes from a deep and inherent desire to satisfy their needs or to support something they value. And you most likely do the same thing – its normal human behavior.

Unquestionably Everything stems from either Needs and Values.

As an example, someone who is upset may just have a need for consideration, or they might in reality value dependability. By getting upset, they are attempting to satisfy these needs or honor what they value.

Let’s say that an angry man has a conversation with Gandhi (while he was alive). And he said to Gandhi, “You’ve never had a difficult life so don’t pretend to you know what suffering is. People wait on you hand and foot! You’re such a phony!”

Can you imagine Gandhi responding to this as some people would– defensively, with anger and critical words? “What do you mean phony? Try doing what I do every day… you wouldn’t last a minute. You an ignorant little man– you probably don’t even work for a living!”

Now I’m sure you can imagine where this conversation would end up!

It’s almost impossible to think of Gandhi reacting this way, but why not ? What does he know that most of us don’t?

Gandhi knows that the man upset stems from his own challenging life and is just venting about his own pain. The man is angry because his needs have not been satisfied, and things in his life are out of harmony with his values.

So, from now on, when confronted with difficult people, try to remind yourself that absolutely everything people say or do is an effort to meet their needs or support something they value.

The next you’ll are in one of these uncomfortable situation–STOP–don’t justifying yourself, instead start by reminding yourself that their anger isn’t about you, it’s about them and their situation.

Don’t take it to personally.

Consider this: Do you want your happiness to be dependent upon others, or do you long for the kind of happiness that you have complete control over? Take charge of the situation by aligning your values with the actions you take.

Another great way to stay calm when dealing with others’ who are upset or angry is to be curiosity. Ask questions such as, “Hmm, they seems very tense and upset. I wonder what’s going on in their life that has them feel this way.”

Stop and take a if you minutes to empathize with their circumstances and think, “If I behaved the way they’re behaving toward me, what could possibly be going on in my life?” Then guess what it could be.

Changing your focus of attention in this way can truly set you free. You’ll stop acting or feeling defensive. This focus will lead you to a much more peaceful place and will help you to fill your life with happiness, and a multitude of satisfying relationships you’ll truly enjoy.

“Setting an example is not the main means of influencing others; it is the only means.”
~ Albert Einstein

Let’s review: – Tension and defensiveness isn’t the only way to deal with difficult people. – everything people say or do is in support of something they value or to meet some need. – Their upset is not about you, don’t take it personally. Take on the attitude of being curious. – Your happiness is not dependent on how others act or what they say.

When dealing with difficult people, this approach will help you open the door to a renewed sense of happiness and freedom you will no longer be restricted by your circumstances. You get to choose how you respond and what actions you will take.

If you want to start interacting differently with people who are upset, you must first practice the essential skills that create a more peaceful, happy life. If you’re ready to create that kind of life now, sign up for our thought-provoking and motivational Weekly Action Tips eMail series. The sign-up form is at the top right hand side of your screen. Don’t wait, sign up today. You’ll be happy you did.

With love and great appreciation,
Beth


Is It Really True? New Rules for the Game of Life Quiz ~ Motivate by Fear?

As promised, here is the first installment of our new monthly feature:

If this is the first time you’re playing along, you may want to read our initial explanation. You can find it here:
Is It Really True? Quiz Intro

Please remember that in this quiz there are no right or wrong answers. We simply want to stimulate dialogue in our community about some of our commonly held cultural beliefs. This quiz comes out of a practice we have of asking ourselves if the beliefs we hold as the “truth” are our own, or if we have just adopted them unquestioningly. We hope you enjoy playing along.

Here’s the first statement…

Fear of getting a ticket is the best way to stop people from speeding.

Do you agree or disagree?

Here’s what we came up with when we examined the statement.

Why would governments give tickets in order to stop people from speeding?

We believe that everything we say or do is to meet a need or experience something we value. And when we want something we come up with ideas for getting it–strategies such is giving tickets to people that don’t obey the speeding laws in order to stop people from speeding. Since cultures, societies, and governments are made up of people, we believe the same holds true at that level.

Keeping all this in mind, the first thing we want to do is get to the essence–the underlying values–hidden within any strategy.

What values are people trying to satisfy with this strategy?

We guess these might be the needs or values underlying the strategy of giving tickets to stop speeding:

  • safety–so less people are injured or die on the roads.
  • predictability–so you have greater confidence about what you can expect when you get on the road.
  • effectiveness–by establishing clear agreement about what is and is not unsafe.

Can you think of any other needs our values people may be trying to satisfy using this strategy?

Why this strategy?

Now the question becomes, why this strategy? In our experience, behind every strategy we choose there is a belief that guides the choice and our subsequent actions. So what’s the cultural belief that led the government to choose this strategy as opposed to any other?

Here’s a possible belief we came up with that might have led to adopting this strategy:

  • People need authorities who “know better” to set strong boundaries that will govern their actions.

Which may point to these even deeper underlying beliefs:

  • People can’t be trusted
  • People only care about themselves
  • People make bad decisions on their own

Can you think of any others beliefs that might lead to making laws that impose traffic fines as a way to prevent speeding?

Does this strategy work?

If your goal is to make people worry about getting a ticket, then we would say this strategy works. But if what you really want is safety, predictability and effectiveness then we think it’s probably not working very well.

Think about it. How often do you still see people speeding? How often do you speed yourself? Why is it that so many people continue to speed if there’s a law that tells you not to, and is enforced by the use of speeding tickets?

We’ve identified a number of reasons for this, but the one we’ve picked to explore here is the difference between intrinsic vs. extrinsic motivation.

We define the difference this way: being motivated from our internal values vs. being motivated from externally imposed consequences.

If you’ve been brought up in a typical world culture, then you are no stranger to externally imposed consequences. They start at a very young age. Early on, the authorities in your life teach you what’s right and what’s wrong, what’s good and what’s bad, what’s appropriate and inappropriate.

And you probably quickly learned that you get punished for being wrong or bad and rewarded for being good or right.

So here’s another rule–don’t speed. Enforced using an externally imposed consequence–you’ll get a speeding ticket that will cost you a lot of money and a lot of time if you disobey.

What does this strategy accomplish?

Let’s recap:

  • There is a cultural belief: People can’t be trusted so authorities must tell them what to do.
  • The culture teaches using a system of punishment and rewards.
  • Government came up with this strategy of punishing people who break speeding laws by giving tickets that costs them both time and money.

But what do most people learn from this strategy–both now and when they were children? In our experience the lesson learned is:

Don’t Get Caught When You’re Breaking the Rules.

Given the number of people who still speed, it doesn’t appear that this strategy–or what people actually learn from it–satisfy the underlying desire for safety, predictability, or effectiveness.

What might satisfy these underlying values?

Now let’s contrast the use of extrinsic motivation with intrinsic motivation. What would it take to cultivate intrinsic motivation?

How would we motivate people to do things–such as obey agreed upon speed limits–simply because this was in harmony with their personally held values?

Let’s start with the underlying belief.

What if we were able to change our cultural belief from “people can’t be trusted,” to “people can be trusted to make decisions that are for the highest good of everyone involved” because they inherently care for, and want to contribute to others and themselves.

Where would this belief take us?

Would we change how teach our children?

Let’s see . . . If our underlying cultural belief was that “people can be trusted to make their own decisions,” then most likely we would want to support them in staying present to what’s most important to them–what they personally value.

And we would probably ensure that our children’s education included developing their emotional intelligence. This would support their ability to make decisions based on how their actions might benefit or impact themselves and those around them.

We would still want to do whatever we could to maintain safety, predictability, and effectiveness on our roads, but with this underlying cultural belief, what strategy might we come up with?

This is where we start getting into very unknown territory. We’re not raised to pay attention to our internal values, or whether the consequences of our actions are in harmony with our values. Instead, we are constantly being distracted by external authority telling us what to do–and by the threat of consequences if we don’t obey.

So where this would go and how it would turn out is anyone’s guess.

But imagine being raised in a culture where your caring, kind and competent nature was valued and nurtured. Where your ability to reason and come up with successful, satisfying choices for everyone concerned was respected.

Imagine that your education, both at home and in school, had focused heavily on supporting you in making your own decisions, with respect for your internal guidance. And it supported this through teaching, conversation and experiences designed to help nurture these abilities.

Now imagine, as a society we have decided that limiting speed really will support achieving the goal of keeping our roads safe, predictable, and effective. What strategy might you use to achieve the greatest possible compliance with these speed limits?

What occurs to you?

That’s our thinking on the subject. Please let us know what occurs to you about any or all of this in the comment field below.

We look forward to reading your response.

With great trust and respect for your ability to choose wisely,

Beth and Neill

PS Please remember to sign up for the RSS feed to make sure you are alerted to our next installment of: Is It Really True?


10 Personal Growth Questions That Make a Difference – Part Two

Supporting Your Continued Growth!

Yesterday I posted the first five out of 10 Personal growth questions that have made a difference in my life. Here is part two, the next five questions out of 10. I hope they support you as much as they have supported me.what motivates you?

6. What motivates me?

Motivation is what gets us in action, action is what creates results. Ask the question, what motivates me? Then observe your life. When you accomplish something, identify what is that motivated you to accomplish it. Watch when you get excited, what are you feeling excited about, that’s motivation. If you discover the answer to this question you are well on your way to creating a life you love.

7. What do I value most?

Your values are the essence of who you are. Getting clear about them and living them is a guaranteed way to be the fullest most authentic expression of yourself.

8. What do I really want?

Yes I know this question might seem trite, but how many times do you actually stop and ask yourself this question and then really listen to the answers. The funny thing is, in each moment this question can generate completely different answers.

So, start asking this question, stop and really listen to the answer, and then identify small step towards getting it. You are worth it.

9. What do I appreciate most about myself?

This question is essential for creating a life you love. It’s very challenging to love your life when you can’t identify anything you appreciate about yourself. And I’m convinced the only reason that you couldn’t find things you appreciate about yourself is you haven’t had enough practice. So start practicing today!

10. What am I grateful for?

If you want to live your best possible life, if you want to be all that you can be, or if you just want to be happier in any moment, asked this question as often as you can remember. When you’re in the process of being grateful you can’t help but feeling good.

Why ask questions?

Questioning myself is the easiest way I have found to find truth in my life. This is because we are the only ones that can say what is true for us. So ask questions and never stop asking. Listen to the answers and trust they are true for you. Then start taking actions that move you closer and closer to your truth. This process will guarantee your continued growth into the fullest most authentic expression of you.


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